By Michelle Garcia
Originally published on Advocate.com August 15 2014 10:13 AM ET
The best-ranked 50 colleges in the United States for LGBT students were named by Campus Pride Friday, doubling the size of previous years' list to highlight, as the organization says, the "best of the best."
While the colleges in this year's listing of top campuses are slightly concentrated in progressive regions in the country, the organization touts that there are more southern schools in the overall list, as well as more religiously-affiliated campuses and campuses minority-serving institutions.
Shane Windmeyer, the executive director of Campus Pride, said more colleges than ever have been expanding and improving efforts to recruit and keep LGBTQ students, which was why the organization increased the size of this year's list.
"More than ever, colleges today want to be viewed as LGBT-friendly and a welcoming place for all students," Windmeyer said in a statement released Friday. "Upper-level administrators are now understanding how LGBT-friendliness is key to future institutional success. This top 50 list is proof."
The list is a result of a nation-wide survey of colleges, and universities conducted for and by LGBT experts in the field of higher education. About 80 percent of the 425 colleges that participate in the survey showed some form of improvement over last year's scores.
More information about each college can be found at CampusPride.org.
Central Washington University
Northern Arizona University
Oregon State University
Portland State University
San Diego State University
Southern Illinois University Carbondale
Southern Oregon University
The Ohio State University
The Pennsylvania State University
University of California, Berkeley
University of California, Los Angeles
University of California, Riverside
University of California, Santa Barbara
University of California, Santa Cruz
University of Central Florida
University of Chicago
University of Illinois at Chicago
University of Maryland, College Park
University of Massachusetts, Amherst
University of Michigan
University of Minnesota - Duluth
University of Minnesota - Twin Cities
University of Oregon
University of Pennsylvania
University of Rhode Island
University of Southern California
University of Vermont
University of Washington
University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
Warren Wilson College
Washington State University
Washington University in St. Louis